Pollokshaws Parish Church
Giffnock South Parish Church has been very successfully twinned with Pollokshaws Parish Church for many years. The twinning proposal with a church in an Area of Priority Treatment was initially a prerequisite for Giffnock South Parish Church being allowed to call a minister on the retirement of Rev. Edward Simpson. The twinning with Pollokshaws Parish Church was a natural choice as the minister at that time was Rev. Margaret Whyte who had been an assistant at Giffnock South Parish Church while training for the ministry.
The twinning has developed and flourished for the benefit of both congregations and is a two way process, each congregation supporting the work of the other while nurturing friendships and promoting Christian service.
Kirk Session representatives attend both session meetings and give updates on the work of the congregations. Both congregations were represented on the nominating committees before the appointment of Rev. Catherine Beattie to Giffnock South Parish Church and of Rev. Roy Henderson to Pollokshaws Parish Church to emphasise the importance of the twinning arrangement.
Both congregations support the spiritual and social life of the respective congregations at church fairs, quiz nights, church outings, church concerts and church holidays. There have been joint Advent and Easter Bible studies with wide-ranging discussions and attendance at special services of both congregations.
Giffnock South gives clerical support to Pollokshaws with duplication of Orders of Service and church magazines. Help is also provided for the Nearly New shop along with donations and members of the Worship Team conduct some of the Open Doors mid-week services and provide holiday cover if required. One of the Boys’ Brigade officers also helps with the Pollokshaws BB company.
Pollokshaws has also been very supportive of Giffnock South in many ways. For example, many gifts of clothing and knitting have been donated for the Kwenderana project in Ekwendeni in Malawi. The congregation also made a very generous donation, which was overwhelming, to the Giffnock South Roof Fund.
One very successful joint project has been that of the Banner Group which has sewn banners to decorate the walls of Pollokshaws Parish Church after the refurbishment of the interior. Bunting to decorate both churches has also been sewn to reflect the local area and the faith story of the members and their families.
Pollokshaws Parish Church is undergoing a period of transition and will lose its designation as an Area of Priority Treatment with the taking down of the multi storey flats and the area being zoned for a mix of private and social housing. This is very challenging for the congregation, minister and office bearers, while the surroundings are at present so bleak and the church is physically isolated.
The twinning however will continue as it is no longer just a formal arrangement but a source of genuine friendship and fellowship between the two churches.
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